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SPM  1999

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Subject:

Re: Auditory and visual Stimulation

From:

Kent Kiehl <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Kent Kiehl <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 15 Apr 1999 10:06:08 +0000

Content-Type:

text/plain

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Parts/Attachments

text/plain (122 lines)

Dear Dr. Erhard and SPMers,

    Our group has spent a considerable amount of time and effort
developing software and hardware for fMRI (and ERP, PET and behavioral)
studies.    About 4 years ago we were in a similar position as you
(e.g., looking for software and hardware).  We explored all the
commercial options and as many in house systems as we had access to and
decided that none were adequate or cost effective for what we needed.
So, we opted to develop a custom visual and auditory presentation
package (VAPP) in collaboration with about 4 other research labs based
on the collective experience of the group.  VAPP was designed to be
extremely precise and stable with regard to timing of presentation of
visual and auditory stimuli.  Currently, in the visual modality VAPP can
present over 300 fonts for letter or word stimuli, any bitmaps (e.g.,
images), and we have designed a large suite of custom line and geometric
shape drawing commands.  CD quality sampling rates are supported in the
auditory modality.  Of course both auditory and visual stimuli can be
combined in stimuli runs.  VAPP was designed to be simple, flexible and
easy to use yet it can create very complex experimental protocols.
Complete details and copies of the manuals can be found at
http://www.psychiatry.ubc.ca/sz/nilab/kiehl/vapp
I am working on setting up demo files that illustrate the simplicity and
flexibility of the program, these should be on the web page in a couple
of days.

A number of labs outside the original 5 expressed interest in using VAPP
about a year ago and we decided to form a kind of scientific
'consortium'.  Essentially, labs who want to join the VAPP consortium
pay a one time membership fee, which entitles them to a lifetime license
for VAPP.  VAPP can be installed on as many machines in that lab as
necessary.  All upgrades are freely distributed to the consortiums
members.   Any group may contract independently with the programmer for
special features or upgrades with the caveat that all other groups will
be able to receive the new version once tested.  Currently we are
testing a new high resolution version that supports 1024 x 768 image
resolution.  The goal of the project is to design the perfect
presentation system for fMRI, ERP, PET and behavioral studies.
    VAPP also comes with several supplementary programs, of note, our
behavioral analyses software.  This software, called CIRC, runs on a
separate PC, and communicates with VAPP via a simple serial port
connection. CIRC parses and analyzes online all behavioral data during
experiments.  This is very important to us, as we do a lot of patient
work and it allows us to examine how well the patients are doing in the
task while we are scanning.
    We have been successfully using VAPP for our fMRI, event-related
fMRI, ERP, PET, and numerous behavioral studies for quite some time and
it is now in use in about a dozen labs around the world.  For fMRI
studies we use an NEC projector for presenting our visual stimuli to a
rear projection screen located at the entrance of the bore to the
scanner.  We use a pneumatic sound system that came with the GE system
for presenting auditory stimuli.  We did purchase commercially available
MRI compatible headphones. I can get more details on these items if
anyone desires.
    VAPP can record behavioral responses from a number of peripheral
devices (e.g., keyboard, response pads) and we have developed a fiber
optic response device with a local company in the Vancouver area that we
have been using for about 4 years for fMRI studies.  The company,
Lightwave Medical Inc, is currently marketing the fMRI response device
and they can be contacted at [log in to unmask] or 604-875-4529,
attn. Doug Broadfoot.

    Please feel free to contact me with specific questions or comments.

Best regards,
Kent Kiehl

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
Kent A. Kiehl
2255 Wesbrook Mall                                    work
(604)822-7128
Departments of Psychiatry and Psychology    home   (604)221-7809
University of British Columbia                       fax
(604)822-7756
Vancouver, B.C., Canada V6T 2A1             email [log in to unmask]
http://www.psychiatry.ubc.ca/sz/nilab/kiehl
::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::



[log in to unmask] wrote:

> Hi,
>
> I would like to know what kind of systems people
> use for presentation of tasks and stimuli in fMRI
> and how they rate their system.
> I have a feeling that a lot of people come up with
> their own solution and that the wheel is being
> reinvented over and over again. Also I would like
> to get in contact with vendors of MR-compatible
> audio-systems, LED-goggles, fiber-optic or lcd systems,
> MR-compatible headphones (with the magnet removed or
> pneumatic), software for stimulus presentation etc..
>
> ANY contribution would be appreciated.
> Thanks many times,
>
> Peter Erhard
>
> -----------------------------------------
>
> Peter Erhard, Ph.D.
> Nuklearmedizinische Klinik und Poliklinik
> Klinikum rechts der Isar
> Technische Universitaet Muenchen
> Ismaninger Strasse 22
> 81675 Muenchen
> Germany
>
> Tel: 49-89-4140 4570
> Fax: 49-89-4140 4938
> [log in to unmask]
> [log in to unmask]

--





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